Glossary Of Terms

Glossary of Holmes Institute Terms and Definitions

The following glossary should help students to better understand some of the Holmes Institute terminology and definitions used.



Academic Misconduct
Student cheating or assisting to cheat in an invigilated examination or non-examination context. See: Student Assessment

Academic Support
Access to Academic Support and appropriate learning resources is available to international students as a matter of priority. For students who are finding their course difficult for academic reasons, you need to arrange to see the Principal (Secondary School) or the Higher Education Coordinator for your campus. These people are aware of the obligations of your Student Visa and can assist with issues of academic performance or general understanding of your program.

Academic Staff
Staff employed to undertake teaching and/or research. Sometimes referred to as Faculty.

Academic Transcript
An Academic Transcript (also called Academic Record) is an official statement that contains all details of the subjects and results obtained in a higher-education program at Holmes Institute.

Australian Council for Private Education and Training - the national industry association for independent providers of post-compulsory education and training, for Australian and international students.

Advanced Standing
Credit given for the recognition of prior learning (RPL) for formal studies in another program at the same or another higher education or post-secondary institution. See: Student enrolment and student admissions.

Applying For Leave
The procedure in relation to this area is most important. If students do not go through the process of applying then it will be deemed that you having taken unauthorised leave and you will be reported as absent, impacting directly on your attendance percentage. The correct procedure is to submit an 'Application for Leave' to the Principal (Secondary School) or the Higher Education Coordinator for your campus. WARNING: DO NOT BUY AIR TICKETS UNTIL YOU HAVE BEEN GRANTED LEAVE

For each subject undertaken students are required to complete set tasks that are assessed and contribute to the overall mark and grade achieved for that subject. Students will be provided with a subject outline and the mandatory course assessment procedures at the commencement of each subject to be studied.

An award (or award program) is a recognised certification of achievement that is granted to a student after the completion of all requirements of a higher education program (e.g. Bachelor of Business). These titles appear on Holmes Institute official transcripts and testamurs. Discreet awards, like a Bachelor of Business, are sometimes referred to as a course.

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Bachelor is the title for an undergraduate program (e.g. Bachelor of Business). Generally, a bachelor degree at Holmes Institute comprises 24 subjects and normally takes three years of full-time study to complete. Students have the option to fast-track their studies by enrolling in the Summer Trimester, where available.


The student Blackboard facility is a key communication tool between you, your teachers and the Campus in general. It enables students to access class notes and materials, share information and keep up to date with all that is important at Holmes. Students will be able to access information online once they log in to the Blackboard service. Students are advised to check Blackboard on a daily basis for updated announcements, tasks and other subject related information.

Board of Examiners
Faculty committee that is responsible for the determination of results of the performances of all students enrolled in the faculty.

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Census Date
The date by which students must finalise their enrolment in each trimester. The census dates for all trimesters are listed in the Academic Calendar.

Certificate of Merit (Holmes Secondary)
It is most important to acknowledge the achievements of all students. As a way of doing this, Certificates of Merit are awarded on a weekly basis and presented at each School Assembly. Nominations are made by the teaching staff in recognition of an individual's achievement in any given area. Often these are made in relation to academic progress but they also extend to acts of community spirit, generosity and exemplary moral and social behaviour.

Seeking to obtain an unfair advantage in an examination or in other written or practical work required to be submitted or completed by a student for assessment. See: Academic Misconduct and Student Assessment

Confirmation of Enrolment. Important for international students coming to study in Australia and who may apply to the Department of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs (DIMA) for a student visa after they have received electronic confirmation of enrolment (eCoE) in a full-time course of study.

Contact hours
Contact hours are the number of hours students are expected to attend classes on campus. A full-time student spends about 12 hours per week in classes, plus between 20 and 40 hours studying per week (five to 10 hours per course).

Core (Subject)
A subject of study in which it is mandatory for a student to enrol and pass unless credit transfer and recognition of prior learning (RPL) apply. The number of core subjects for the Bachelor of Business comprises of 15 core subjects, the Bachelor of Professional Accounting comprises of 18 core subjects. The Master of Business Administration comprises of 8 core subjects.

The accumulation of subject according to a set of rules that leads to the award of a qualification.

Credit Transfer
Credit transfer is the process of assessing prior academic work in order to determine whether those studies are of equal depth and academic rigour as courses offered at Holmes Institute. A successful credit transfer application will reduce the number of subjects required to complete an award program. Credit transfer is also known as advanced standing. See also: Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). See Student Admission.

Credit Points
At Holmes Institute, each subject has a credit point value of typically 3 points. The credit point value for each subject is included in the Subject Outline for each subject.

Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students: lists all providers registered to offer courses to people studying in Australia on student visas and the courses that are approved for offer.

Cross-institutional studies
Cross-institutional studies occur where a student enrols in a subject/s through another institution (external relationship). On successful completion the subject can be credited to the student's award program at their home institution. Approval of the campus Associate Dean must be approved for cross institutional transfer.

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Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.

The adjournment of the starting date for study that allows a student's place in a course to be held for a nominated length of time, usually one trimester.

Department of Immigration and Citizenship

Domestic Student
A person enrolled in an undergraduate or postgraduate academic program and who is an Australian or New Zealand citizen, or who holds Permanent Residency status in Australia.

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Elective (Subject)
A subject that is not a compulsory part of a major or any other compulsory course requirement. Programs at Holmes Institute include elective (subjects) that provide students with some flexibility to study subjects outside their major but count towards their degree.

Email Information

All students have been allocated a Holmes email address. The format of your email address is: (Melbourne) (Sydney) (Brisbane)
(Gold Coast)

You can access your student email server from within the Campus or from anywhere on the Internet by using your Student ID and Password. The Website is: (Melbourne)
(Gold Coast)


Equal Opportunity

You are entitled to an equal opportunity to success, using the resources at Holmes. The College's record in this regard has been exemplary. Senior Management at Holmes has over 45 years of experience in educating a culturally diverse student population that boasts members from 35 countries around the world. Holmes appreciates the value of a diverse student population and is committed to meeting the individual educational needs of people from all backgrounds and at all stages of their lives.

Enrolment is the process where an applicant, having received a written offer to study a particular program, chooses the subjects to study in that program, pays the appropriate fees, and is issued with a Student ID Card. See also: Recommended enrolment pattern.

Education Services for Overseas Students, which regulates the education and training of overseas students studying in Australia on student visas. Using the ESOS Act and associated legislation ESOS protects the interests of the students.

Executive Dean
An Executive Dean is a member of academic staff who is responsible for the management of a faculty.

Where a student is not required to take a certain unit on the basis of work already completed but is required to undertake an alternative unit of equivalent credit points.

Where a student is not allowed to re-enrol in the course or Faculty after failing to meet the academic or other specified requirements of the Faculty or institution.

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An organisational area within the University devoted to particular academic programs (e.g. Faculty of Business, IT, English). A faculty on each campus is headed by a Dean.

A loan scheme available to Australian students to help eligible non-Commonwealth supported students pay their tuition fees. Fee-Help link.

Full-time student
A full-time student studies at least three subjects per trimester, or 75% or above study load. The standard full-time workload is four subjects per semester.

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General Behaviour
Any behaviour in relation to people or property which is contrary to generally accepted standards of behaviour and those specified by Holmes Institute.

A graduand is a student who has completed all the requirements of an award program, but is yet to receive their testamur (degree certificate).

A graduate is a student who has completed all the requirements of an award program and has received their testamur (degree certificate).

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Handbook (Student Handbook)
Comprises of course rules, course structures and subject details for undergraduate and postgraduate course offered by Holmes Institute, which is published annually.

Homeroom (Secondary College)
Each student will be allocated to a Home Room with one of the teaching staff as a permanent Home Room teacher. There will be two Home Room sessions a week where students meet together in various groups undertaking a series of activities, discussions and social interaction. You will be assigned automatically into one of these groups with lockers allocated according to these Home Room Groups.

Refer to the Student Information Booklet for more details regarding the activities teachers intend to include in the Home Room sessions.

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International English Language Testing Scheme

International Student
A person enrolled in an undergraduate or postgraduate academic program who is not a citizen of Australia or New Zealand and who does not hold permanent residency or permanent humanitarian status in Australia.

Id Cards
Once you have enrolled, you are entitled to receive your student ID Card. ID Card photos are taken in the first week of your course and your card issued immediately. Your ID Card establishes you as part of the school and allows you certain rights and obligations. You will find your card useful in obtaining student concessions and discounts rates for purchase of textbooks, conference and seminar attendance, the cinema and other entertainment events and venues. You must carry your ID card with you whenever you have a class.
Please note that International Students are not applicable for public transport concession.

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A class varying in size assigned to a subject. A lecture involves a member of the teaching staff presenting themes and concepts related to a course of study to students enrolled in the subject. Lectures are mostly one-way interaction with students taking notes. Most subjects have two weekly lectures.

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A major is a sequence of four subjects from one particular area of study that can be studied at Bachelor and Master level of some courses at Holmes Institute.

Mentoring (Academic Mentoring)
A process at Holmes Institute where students are supported by designated Academic Mentors to discuss any issues of their studies.

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Non-award course
An academic course of study varying in length and normally not more than the equivalent of one trimester full-time (e.g. faculty certificates).  Non-award courses are normally designed to meet the needs of external clients, including the profession, industry and the community.  The course may include subjects that are normally taken as part of award courses, and may articulate into award programs.

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Open Book Exam
Unless otherwise specified, an open book exam allows the student to bring in the prescribed original textbook for the subject. No other material is allowed and it is expected that the textbook does not include any additional handwritten comments and answers.

Off-Campus Learning
Distributed learning with teacher and learners geographically separated from each other, commonly also referred to as Distance Learning or Distance Education.

The beginning of trimester for new students (can vary in time between one or two days to one week) during which activities are held that help students settle into university and provide them with information to prepare them for university life.

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Part-time student
A part-time student studies either one or two courses per semester, i.e. less than 75 % of the study load. The standard part-time workload is two courses per semester. Those attending university in Australia on a student visa, e. g. international students, cannot study on a part-time basis other than during non-compulsory trimesters.

Personal Information
Any information about an individual whose identity is apparent or can reasonably be ascertained from the information or opinion, and may include name, address, date of birth and staff or student identification number.

Using another person's ideas and or manner of expressing them and to pass them off as one's own by failing to give appropriate acknowledgement, e.g. referencing.

A concise, formal and mandatory statement of principles that provide a framework for decision-making, and means by which the university reduces institutional risk.

Postgraduate student
A postgraduate student studies a postgraduate coursework program (e.g., Graduate Diploma, Masters by coursework) or a higher degree by research (e.g. Masters by research, Doctor of Philosophy) at university.

Prerequisite (subjects)
Prerequisite subjects are those that a student is required to complete prior to proceeding to a further subject.

A program is the complete award with which a student graduates (e.g. Bachelor of Business). Sometimes referred to as a course.

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Can be formal or informal. An award or other form of certification of attainment, competence or attendance.

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Recognition of prior learning for credit transfer purposes (RPL)
Recognition of prior learning (RPL) is the process of assessing knowledge and skills developed through other learning, informal studies or work-related learning, to determine whether the skills and knowledge contribute to meeting the learning outcomes and assessment criteria of a course or program at Holmes Institute. A successful RPL application will reduce the number of subjects required to complete an award program. RPL programs for credit normally have had an assessment attached to them.

Recommended enrolment pattern
A recommended enrolment pattern lists the ideal subjects to enrol in, in order to meet the requirements of a degree.

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Safe And Secure Environment

You are entitled to be free from harm at Holmes where there are a number of policies and procedures to minimise the potential for you being harmed in any way. There are laws such as the Dangerous Goods Act and the Occupational Health and Safety Act that provide legal protection for you against harm coming your way. Do not leave belongings unattended in classrooms, the library or any other area of the Campus. Report and loss or theft to the schoolâ??s Administration Officer. Holmes take no responsibility for the loss damage of personal items that are left unattended. Alert the Principal, Holmes Administration or teachers if any suspicious unknown people are in your area.

A merit award based on academic performance which provides financial advantage to students undertaking a specified course of study. The advantage is usually in form of full or partial remission of fees, or meeting of costs associated with the course of study such as living costs, purchase of books and/or accommodation.See the Holmes Institute, Higher Institute Postgraduate scholarship.

Study Skills Support

Students studying sometimes find it difficult to deal with a new learning environment. They may need to further develop their language or literacy skills to be successful in their studies. Do not wait until there is a problem! 

Special Consideration
Consideration by a Board of Examiners (or the Executive Dean or a nominee) of students whose assessment has been affected by illness or other serious cause.

Special Examination (deferred examination)
A special examination that may be granted to students whose work during the academic year, or performance in an examination or other assessment, has been gravely affected by illness or other serious cause.

A subject is a component of an award program that is normally one semester in length. Each subject is generally 3 credit points in value. The standard enrolment for a full-time student is four subjects per trimester. Upon the completion of which the student is awarded a grade/mark that appears on the student's academic record.

Subject Code
A subject code is a combination of letters and numbers that identifies an award program for administrative purposes, e.g. HC1011 or HA3021

Summer trimester
Summer trimester is a non-compulsory teaching period in the undergraduate and postgraduate academic year, running between December and mid-February. Courses may be delivered in intensive mode. Summer trimester courses are available to Holmes Institute students, students from other universities studying cross-institutionally, and members of the community studying as visiting students.

Supplementary Examination
A supplementary assessment that is granted to a student as a concession and in circumstances such as when a candidate obtains a mark in a particular mark range, or after certain prerequisites have been satisfied. 

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A testamur is the certificate awarded to a graduate on completion of a program of study.

Timetables (Secondary School)

The Holmes Secondary timetable is broken up into 6 x 50 minute periods a day with a morning recess and lunchtime break. School Assembly and two Homeroom sessions are also included.

The academic year at Holmes Institute is divided into three trimesters. First trimester generally runs from March to July, the second trimester from July to November and the third trimester from December to February, as listed in the Academic Calendar.

A small study group assigned to a subject that operates as a forum for discussion and consolidation of the themes and concepts introduced in a lecture. Tutorial classes provide an atmosphere of discussion, interaction, presentation and debate.

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Undergraduate student

A student enrolled in an academic program designated by the statutes or rules to be an undergraduate program, e.g. bachelor degree. An undergraduate student may also be a student who already holds a degree, but is taking a second or subsequent degree at the same level.

Unspecified Credit
A credit that is not matched to a particular subject at the course to be studied at Holmes Institute.  An unspecified credit is given in the form of credit points or exemption from a course's elective requirements.

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Victorian Certificate of Education

Vocational Education and Training

Victorian Tertiary Admission Centre

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Work integrated learning
Work integrated learning incorporates field trips, lectures by industry experts, internships, practicums and applied research projects. Work integrated learning is designed to enable students to experience the work environment and career realities of their chosen discipline.